Altas try to get back at Cards
Perpetual Help tries to stay in the thick of the battle for a Final Four berth as it clashes with a dangerous Mapua squad today in the 90th NCAA basketball tournament at Filoil Flying V Arena in San Juan.
The Altas and Cardinals take the floor at 4 p.m. with Perpetual Help, armed with an 8-5 card, needing a win to tie St. Benilde at fourth spot.
With the race for a Final Four berth, especially the top two spots, getting tighter, another loss will be a massive blow to the Altas who dropped a 76-80 heartbreaker to Jose Rizal U in overtime last Friday.
As it stands, San Beda has the inside track in the race for a twice-to-beat edge with an 11-2 record followed by JRU and Arellano (9-4).
“There’s really no choice for us now but win our remaining games,” said Altas guard Scott Thompson. “We just can’t relax.”
Thompson, the MVP race leader, almost singlehandedly carried the Altas to victory against the Bombers, scoring all of his team’s 13 points in overtime only for his efforts to go in vain.
The Altas will be up against the Cardinals who have finally gotten their acts together so late into the season.
The Cardinals notched back-to-back victories for the first time in two seasons after drubbing Lyceum, 76-65, last Friday. The victory allowed Mapua to surpass its win total from last season when coach Atoy Co took over the team.
“We’re playing well but we will be up against a talented and tough team,” said Co.
But the PBA legend swears the Altas will be facing a much different team than the one they drubbed, 91-57, in the first round.
“I think we’re much better than that team and we have some confidence now,” said Co.
The Cardinals will also have to deal with gunners Juneric Baloria and Harold Arboleda.